Introducing the Wedin Chromatic – folk music ornaments in many keys

Anything apart from the two mainstream default harmonicas (Solo-tuned fully-valved chromatic, and un-valved Richter 10-hole diatonic). Alternate tunings, different construction, new functionality, interesting old designs, wishful-thinking... whatever!
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Brendan
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Re: Introducing the Wedin Chromatic – folk music ornaments in many keys

Post by Brendan » Thu Sep 16, 2021 12:17 pm

Quick first impressions...

To start with I'm playing just the basic major and minor scales and pentatonics which Edvin showed in the Phrase Diagrams. That is, playing as if the harmonica is a diatonic. He'd call it the Wedin Diatonic, I guess!

Even in this simple configuration it has some good features:

1. Two complete major scales available as natural notes. (The only other tuning I can think of immediately which gives this ability within a 4-hole repeating octave span is Bebop Tuning, but maybe some of IaNerd's do as well).

They are a fifth apart. If you chose the base note of G on a Wedin Diatonic you'd have full G and D major scales in the one harp - very handy for Irish music, for which these are the two main keys. And of course their relative minors Em and Bm, plus the Dorian minors Am and Em, are automatically included. That covers a lot of essential keys for trad music. Plus the other modes of each scale, of which the Mixolydian is most commonly used (you have D and A Mixolydian built in).

2. In terms of playability, the main distinguishing feature of Edvin's approach (and one of his main reasons for adopting it) is the legato feel from many adjacent same-breath notes. This does give a nice smooth flow for sure, but the down side is that it can make smaller intervals like thirds further apart. I'd have to spend a lot more time with it to feel if this would be a drawback. On the chromatic version this issue can be amelriorated somewhat by using the slider.

3. Jaw-flick decorations are nice. For example in the major keys, the common 232-1 and 565-3 triplets are easy to get - which is not the case on standard diatonic harps.

More later...

EdvinW
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Re: Introducing the Wedin Chromatic – folk music ornaments in many keys

Post by EdvinW » Thu Sep 16, 2021 9:13 pm

Thank you very mugh for the feedback, Brendan! :)

I'll answer the three posts in turn.

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Regarding the use of extra buttons: I do think it could be helpful, but I don't really follow your reasoning. I think you might have misunderstood something, but I'm not sure.

First, the slider is not completely regular in that it doesn't affect all notes the same. Holes 4, 8 and 12 are irregular. I made it like that because the keys I play in don't involve a lot of shifting between E and D#, but quite a lot between G and A.

Second, the two versions I presented are actually sort of a single version, as they use the same reedplates. The only difference is that the slide is flipped!

Related to both points, the slide-in and slide-out tunings are not transposed versions of each other. They do follow the same "rules" though, and the patterns for their two respective scales are the same!

Unfortunately, changing the interval for the slider thus doesn't suffice to alternate between the versions. It's one of the few cases where changing between tunings is easier with a normal chrom :)

Does this seem right, or is it me who has misunderstood something?

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I haven't got around to posting about it on Slidemeister. I did sign up though and have written some other short posts. I've thought I'd try and record something new, and how to best present it, but I guess I'm just overthinking it...

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1. Bebop and IaNerd's Inverted Bebop are the only two "normal" 4-periodic tunings with this property, but by scrambling the notes like I've done more versions are theoretically possible.

The reason I suggested the sharp slide version for Irish music is that the keys D and A can be played slide-out. G can be easily played with some slidework as well. If you transpose it, the key of G does get easier to play, but the key of A becomes very much harder. You might like the compromise of transposing the sharp slide version to G and D, but regularising the hole 4, 8 and 12 to a half step. Thus you could still play in A major, at the cost of some ornaments in G and D.

2. If you do explore it some more I'd be very interested to hear what you find :)

3. I'm happy to hear you like the jaw-flick decorations, I do to! I'm not completely sure how to read your notation though: what does the hyphen mean?

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A further comment which I might not have pointed out properly: The lowest and highest notes of my tuning don't follow the pattern from the rest of the harp. The reason is, simply, that I think a low G and a high A are more useful than a low G# and an additional high G. In some cases, for instance if you would transpose it for Irish music like Brendan suggests, it might make sense to keep the 1D notes regular.
Edvin Wedin

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Brendan
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Re: Introducing the Wedin Chromatic – folk music ornaments in many keys

Post by Brendan » Thu Sep 16, 2021 10:15 pm

Thanks for the reply Edvin.

Re. The confusion over slide up or down: no doubt you're right. TBH I guess the DM48 is not that relevant because few people own one, and it doesn't give a real harmonica sound, which is what people would be interested in.

For now I'm just exploring the simple diatonic version anyway. I'm interested to see how it would sound in a real harp with bends, so will retune a Lucky 13 and give it a try.

EdvinW
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Re: Introducing the Wedin Chromatic – folk music ornaments in many keys

Post by EdvinW » Fri Sep 17, 2021 1:24 pm

Brendan wrote:
Thu Sep 16, 2021 10:15 pm
For now I'm just exploring the simple diatonic version anyway. I'm interested to see how it would sound in a real harp with bends, so will retune a Lucky 13 and give it a try.
While it's quite nice to play without the slide as-is, for diatonics there are some variations one can make to make it more optimised for fewer keys. I'm starting a new thread for them!
Edvin Wedin

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